Cowboy Portraits at the Black Hills Photo Shootout

This morning at the Black Hills Photo Shootout: Cowboy - and cowgirl - portraits.

Les Voorhis took the group to a cool ranch where we encouraged the workshop participants to see the light and to compose carefully. After all, combine a good subject with good composition and a good exposure, and you have the making of good image.

And talk about great subjects, we had the best!

The opening picture for this post is a hand-held Canon 5D Mark III in-camera HDR image. I boosted the ISO to 4000 and still got a clean shot in the dimly-lit barn. That says a lot about the image sensor in the camera.

If you are new to HDR, check out my article, HDR Must Know Info.

We arrived on site early to catch the light, and Les knew exactly where to position the subjects so we had great light. For the shot above, I underexposed the scene a bit for more saturation in the sky. I shot at f/22 to create the starburst effect. Directing the cowboy to interact with the horse helped make the photograph . . . and as those who attend my workshops know, there is a big difference between taking a photo and making a photograph.

In my keynote talk last night, I talked about the importance of seeing the light. The beautiful side-lighting here created a flattering effect on our cowgirl model. I toned my color file with the Paper Toner filter in Nik Color Efex Pro. See all the plug-ins I use, and get a discount, on my Plug-ins page.

Les and I will be doing a workshop here in 2013. Shoot me an email to get on the info list. We hope to see you in the Black Hills, pardner.

Explore the light,